While finding an internship in the competitive field of the arts or media can be tough, there are things you can do on your own that will show employers you’re not the type to just sit around and wait for things to happen, but rather you like to take action.
The best thing to do when you’re studying in a field such as media, architecture or visual arts is to make your very own personalized creative folder that features all your work, which will act as a great tool to take along with you to interviews.
The portfolio will serve as a work sample, showcasing all of your abilities and talents that you would bring to the table.
Here are a few ways you can build your portfolio on your own:
Many colleges and universities have their own school newspapers, so try your best to find out how you can become a contributor to your campus newspaper.
School newspapers provide students with a variety of opportunities to showcase their talent by writing articles, opinion pieces, advice columns, sports columns, promoting school events and even creating cartoon strips.
You can often find opportunities to get writing experience outside of your school, too. One option? TalentEgg is always looking for contributors.
Try starting up your own professional blog on free sites such as WordPress or tumblr. Make sure to keep your blog interesting and relevant, and keep up-to-date on the industry you hope to work for (but stay away from blogging on sensitive issues, such as culture, religion and politics, as you don’t want to end up offending someone who reads your blog).
Check out this success story: How Sports Fan Chris Lund Made A Blog Into A Journalism Job
If you are the creative type, I strongly recommend Behance.net. This global online platform will allow you to create and upload your own special creative projects in several areas such as graphic design, typography, animation and motion graphics.
The site will also allow you to document which digital programs you used to create your work and to post your work up for sale.
If you love photography, invest in or borrow a good quality camera and embark on the endless possibilities to discover the types of digital media you can create. Perhaps you will find your passion in wildlife photography, nature photography, microphotography or even fashion. If you are into event photography, snapping pics at events on your campus is perhaps the best way to develop some skills and experience in that area of photography. Want to practice portraits? Round up your friends and offer to take professional-looking photos for their LinkedIn profiles.
If you enjoy people photography, consider becoming a relationship photographer and network around with people you know to see if you can photograph them at events such as engagements, weddings and anniversaries. Another great idea is to talk to parents you know and see if they would be interested in getting personalized baby photo calendars or family portraits.
Not only will these do-it-yourself projects help you gain experience in your field, but they will also help to enlarge your professional network and can provide a source of extra cash if you decide you’re good enough to charge for your work.
So what are you waiting for? Get creative, find your passion and show employers what you’ve got.
Photo credit: Gwenaël Piaser